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Data-driven Decision Making in Pharma: Leveraging Closed-loop Marketing 

It’s no wonder that without closed-loop marketing we see many pharma businesses launch out with so much promise but don’t appear to flourish after some years. Is it because the industry is too congested to allow the success of hardworking startup owners or that the barriers to entry are too high? You could say it is, but with proper preparation anything is possible.

As a digital marketing company, we’ve observed that many pharma businesses start energetically by collecting and analyzing raw facts (data) from the market before making decisions. 

However, this drive for precision in marketing efforts dropped after a few years, revealing that the initial energy was only to secure investment funding or other immediate benefits. There was no long time plan to sustain their initial meticulous approach!

Data is king when making Pharma business decisions – whether clinical data for a new drug product or market data to aid new marketing strategies. 

As you read, you’ll learn how data is involved in closed-loop marketing, some challenges you can expect in implementing data analytics in your business, and how you navigate through for success. Let’s jump in.

Table of Contents

How Closed-loop Marketing Works

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John Wanamaker once said, “Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is I don’t know which half.” 

Decades have passed, and most digital marketers are still in his shoes. Even with efficient CRM tools like Platforce today, only a few folks use it to close that loop between their marketing efforts and revenue. 

Closed-loop marketing involves collecting data from a customer’s interactions with a product and analyzing it to discover how to serve customers better. In closed-loop marketing, the sales team provides the data and customer feedback they’ve obtained to the marketing team. 

The sales team monitors the customer’s journey up to the conversion point. This insight helps the marketing team to know what the customers want. The information is then used appropriately for lead generation. 

For effective closed-loop marketing, the sales and marketing teams must be collaborative. Both teams must share the same goal, and that is the success of the Pharma company. This kind of data-driven process is what leads to success.

The Role of Data in Closed-loop Marketing

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When there is enough data, a Pharmaceutical company has the foresight to support its decisions. They can easily predict the company’s marketing outcomes from different strategic choices.

It is better to acquire information on how your company should conduct sales and marketing rather than risking millions of dollars and a lot of time on research and development. 

Data analytics is a pharmaceutical company’s pathfinder. Analyzing market data allows you to transform acquired data into logical reasoning to reveal trends and the best action.

Not all drugs can be advertised the same way because of regulations. The pharmaceutical industry is a complex field. Hence, the industry should not embrace all marketing trends. 

Once the sales team has researched how the regulatory authorities want the medicine to be sold, the marketing team uses that strategy to advertise to the final consumers (HCPs or Patients). Here are a few factors to consider when leveraging data in pharma marketing: 

Closed-loop Marketing Helps You to Build A Targeted Marketing Strategy

Understanding the target market is crucial for pharmaceutical companies. The target market comprises customers who require specific products or services the most. Within the broader market, there exists a particular audience.

For the Pharmaceutical industry, identifying this subset through detailed demographics is essential. By tailoring marketing strategies to meet the needs of this specific audience, companies can maximize their profits effectively. 

Utilizing data analytics provides valuable insights into the demographics and pinpoints areas where the disease is most prevalent. 

This focused approach ensures that you direct resources efficiently, leading to better outcomes for the industry and the patients in need.

Monitoring the Return On Investment (ROI) of your Marketing Efforts

Receiving meager returns after investing staggering sums of money in drug research would be financially disastrous. Investors are drawn to drug research and development, mainly when there is a good chance that the study will be successful. 

Pharmaceutical companies may become overly focused on research and development without considering the commercial aspect. Tracking ROI is considerably more crucial than drug discovery, which is vital, too. Increased return on investment is one of the Pharma industry’s ultimate goals. Due to this, the expense and time are justified.

Nonetheless, the pharmaceutical industry’s business side can operate efficiently thanks to data analysis and closed-loop marketing. 

Utilizing Closed-loop Reporting Between Your Marketing and Sales Teams

This type of reporting is a collaborative effort between the sales and marketing teams, working hand-in-hand to boost a company’s success. They need to be in sync to create a seamless performance.

It helps both teams understand which marketing strategies resonate with customers and lead to actual sales. The sales team plays a crucial role here; they are like the eyes and ears on the ground, observing customer interactions and reporting to the marketing team.

This dynamic feedback loop ensures that marketing efforts are not just shots in the dark but are finely tuned based on fundamental customer interactions. 

It’s like a continuous conversation between both teams, where insights from the sales team guide the marketing strategies, creating a powerful synergy that drives business growth.

Challenges Pharma Industries face with Data-driven Closed Loop Marketing. 

Closed-loop marketing, especially in the pharmaceutical industry, is a challenging journey. Although it fills in sales gaps, navigating it can be difficult due to the industry’s unique nature, distinct from other sectors. 

Pharma businesses operate under stringent regulations and deal with sensitive patient data, making implementing closed-loop strategies complex. Additionally, it is tough to effectively gauge how marketing initiatives affect sales in this challenging environment. 

We want to consider a few specific challenges you may encounter when trying to leverage data analytics in your closed-loop marketing and how to navigate through them:

1. Training your Sales and Marketing Teams to Interpret Data Correctly

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Training your sales representatives to implement CLM tools and comprehend data insights effectively may pose a significant challenge. 

Many industries need to correct their CLM strategies due to the inability to leverage the collected data. Access to extensive data is only enough if the sales force has the knowledge to implement it successfully.

The way out of these is to employ professionals and experts to train your team members on standard data collection and analysis. It’s up to you to decide if you’ll train your whole marketing team or only your high-performing players.

2. Ensuring the Use of Current Data

Not all information out there is equally valuable for you. You must use both current and relevant data for the decision before you. Most companies start on the right foot in gathering current data, often to secure funding for their startup. Afterwards, the drive drops and the once-zealous efforts to collect data are nowhere to be found.

Context, markets, government, and technology evolve daily, making using last year’s data sets for today’s decisions unwise. Beware of the temptation to run a business on assumed sense and expertise; get the raw facts! Gut feelings in business would only lead to a colossal waste of time, energy, and resources.

3. Regulatory Compliance 

The pharmaceutical sector operates under stringent regulations, making it risky to follow market trends unthinkingly because they work for other industries. This challenge can restrict a marketing team’s strategic choices.

Your team can only comply with the regulations they know, so just like the first point, train them!

4. Data Security 

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Patients are at the center of product design in the pharmaceutical sector, which means the company gears every effort toward meeting their unique demands. 

This crucial relationship highlights the necessity for the highest level of confidentiality in the sector when dealing with sensitive patient data. 

However, when you need to exchange information across different teams, this secrecy poses a severe problem. It becomes challenging to balance the necessity for information sharing and patient privacy, exposing a major problem with data in the pharmaceutical industry.

Tackling the privacy challenge demands investments in cutting-edge technologies to secure confidentiality and a continuous commitment to adapting. With the right tools, you can ensure your patient’s privacy.

5. Starting with the Executive Team

Incorporating data-driven efforts into your closed-loop marketing strategies must flow from head to toe. To collect and analyze data effectively, the company’s leadership must instill a strong consciousness of its purpose and goals into every member. For some, this task may pose a significant challenge.

There must be a written vision and mission statement. Assessing the business’s strengths, weaknesses, and competition is equally crucial. The leaders mustn’t be afraid to have the “hard” discussions – this enables team members to ask critical questions (in data collection) that are essential to the company’s growth.

They should also do a thorough analysis of the market and ask questions like – how large or saturated is the market the company is playing in? What segment of that market are they zooming into, and why? Such data analysis and more are the way to thrive as a Pharma company if the leaders have the guts to do it.

Final Thoughts

Data-driven strategies in closed-loop marketing are vital to growing your pharmaceutical business. The importance of data analysis to provide information on market trends, patients’ preferences, and competitive activities cannot be overstated. Profitability while simultaneously enhancing patient outcomes and growing your Pharma businesses depends on it.

You need more than developing and marketing a product in the pharmaceutical industry. You need a tool that helps you implement and make sense of the market data. Also, it helps you make well-informed marketing decisions while ensuring data security and results that contribute to the profit and growth of your pharmaceutical business.

Get started by following our demo or tour now!